Turkey History Timeline
7000 BC The site of Catalhoyuk in central Turkey was
settled. It is considered the world’s first urban
2000 BC The Hittites lived around Cappadocia. The name
Cappadocia comes from the Hittite for "land of pretty horses."
1250 BC The Trojan War fought between the armies of Troy
1184 BC Greeks finally captured Troy, Turkey
1000 BC Troy at Hissarlik in northwest Turkey was
destroyed by fire and abandoned
738-696 BC King Midas ruled Phrygia
640 BC The 1st coins were issued in Lydia, and featured
face to face heads of a bull and lion.
348-345 BC Aristotle lived and taught in Assos, (later
334 BC Alexander the Great of Macedonia marches through
323 BC The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, a Graeco-Roman
seaport was completed after 125 years of construction. It was
considered one of the 7 architectural wonders of the ancient
100 AD In Ephesus the apostle St. John is said to be
buried. The city is also said to be the final house of the
330 AD Constantine renamed the town of Byzantium to
537 AD Hagia Sofia, the largest church in the world, was
built by Emperor Justinian.
1071 Turks defeated the Byzantine army under Emperor
Romanus IV at Malazgirt, Eastern Turkey.
1087 At Myra (Demre), Turkey, merchants from the Italian
port of Bari reportedly stole the bones of St. Nicholas.
1098 Christian Crusaders of the First Crusade seized
1299 The Ottoman Empire began.
1453 Constantinople fell to Sultan Mehmet II “The
Conqueror”. Hagia Sophia was turned into a mosque.
1529 Ottoman armies under Suleiman the Magnificient ended
their siege of Vienna and headed back to Belgrade. The Ottomans
siege of Vienna was a key battle of world history.
1534 Ottoman Empire extended from Hungary to Baghdad.
1881 Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, first president
(1923-38) of the Republic of Turkey, was born.
1914 A Turkish fleet including 2 German cruisers
stormed the Black Sea and bombarded Odessa, Sevastopol and
1914 Great Britain and France declared war on Turkey.
1915 Australian and New Zealand troops (ANZAC) landed at
Gallipoli. Their attempt to take the Ottoman Turkish Empire out
of the war was unsuccesful. The allies were defeated in one of
the deadliest battles of the war.
1918 Turkey signed the Mondros Armistice with the Allies,
agreeing to end hostilities.
1919 Mustafa Kemal arrived in Samsun, Anatolia, to start
1920 The Turkish Grand National Assembly held its first
meeting in Ankara.
1923 The Treaty of Lausanne, which settled the boundaries
of modern Turkey, was concluded in Switzerland.
1923 Ankara became Turkey's capital.
1923 Oct 29, The Republic of Turkey was proclaimed by
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, its founder and first president
1935 Turkey held its 1st election that allowed women to
1938 Nov 10, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk (57), marshal and
president of Turkey, died.
1946 Institution of multi party democracy
1954 Turkey joined NATO.
1959 Turkey applied to join the European Economic
1974 Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit ordered Turkish troops
to invade Cyprus.
1983 General election won by Turgut Ozal's Motherland
1987 Turkey applies for full EEC membership.
1993 Prof. Tansu Ciller becomes Turkey's first woman
1999 PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan captured in Kenya and
receives death sentence but later commuted to life imprisonment
2004 Turkey signs protocol banning death penalty in all
2004 State TV broadcasts first Kurdish-language program
2007 AK Party wins parliamentary elections.